Navy test fires electromagnetic cannon

Dec 10, 2010
United States Navy logo. The US Navy announced a successful test Friday of an electromagnetic cannon capable of firing a projectile 110 nautical miles (200 kilometers) at five times the speed of sound.

The US Navy announced a successful test Friday of an electromagnetic cannon capable of firing a projectile 110 nautical miles (200 kilometers) at five times the speed of sound.

"This demonstration moves us one day closer to getting this advanced capability to sea," said Rear Admiral Nevin Carr, chief of naval research.

Tested at the Navy's Dahlgren Surface Warfare Center in Virginia, the futuristic weapon uses powerful jolts of electric current to propel a non-explosive slug along rails before launching it at supersonic velocities.

The latest test involved a 33-megajoule shot, the most powerful ever attempted and three times that of the previous test in January 2008.

A is equivalent to the energy released when a one-tonne vehicle slams into a wall at 100 miles (160 kilometers) per hour.

"Today's railgun test demonstrates the tactical relevance of this technology, which could one day complement traditional surface ship combat systems," Carr said.

"The 33-megajoule shot means the Navy can fire projectiles at least 110 nautical miles, placing sailors and marines at a safe standoff distance and out of harm's way."

He added that "the high velocities achievable are tactically relevant for air and ."

The test model bears little resemblance to a gun. Instead, thick black cables plug into the rear of what looks like a long rectangular grill.

That armature holds the rails together as a powerful electric current surges through them, pushing the slug forward.

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sender
1.8 / 5 (8) Dec 10, 2010
Utilizing this to launch disks with both explosive and laser guidance properties would yield a great deal of control especially when utilized as part of a space fountain array system.
Quantum_Conundrum
3.5 / 5 (17) Dec 10, 2010
I think you miss the point.

Aside from it's superior range compared to any other true "ballistic" projectile, the purpose of a rail gun is to minimize the amount of explosive ammunition you must carry on a vessel. This then makes your ship much safer in a battle since there is less chance of secondary explosions if your ship is hit by an enemy weapon. This makes your ship "almost indestructible" because there are no "volatile" substances on board. I say "almost" becuase historically any time some moron has made the idiotic comment that "even God couldn't sink this ship," they have instantly been proven wrong.

At any rate, the point is the rail gun is superior offensively by simply being a better weapon, and it is superior defensively in that it doesn't have any chance of a catastrophic explosion or failure like other big guns.
HaveYouConsidered
4.9 / 5 (10) Dec 10, 2010
Wow, mach 5 and 110 NM. Especially considering that level of performance can be had for just about 9 kilowatt hours of juice (1 KWh=3.6 megajoules). A couple bucks worth of electricity.
LariAnn
3.3 / 5 (10) Dec 10, 2010
I'm curious about how this would work as a way of getting durable cargo out into space. Is the railgun capable of hurling a slug into orbital space, and if so, how much less would this cost as far as getting cargo out into space, cargo that could conceivably be retrieved using a roaming orbital shuttle guided by a homing beacon on the cargo pod?
Bob_Kob
1 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
I'm sure it uses a lot more than a couple of bucks of electricity.. although the math seems right...
sstritt
3.3 / 5 (12) Dec 10, 2010
Probably never practical way to reach orbit. You could built a rail gun big enough to accelerate to orbital v. (around mach 25), but you'd still be in the lower atmosphere and would immediately burn up unless heavily shielded.
Quantum_Conundrum
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
Probably never practical way to reach orbit. You could built a rail gun big enough to accelerate to orbital v. (around mach 25), but you'd still be in the lower atmosphere and would immediately burn up unless heavily shielded.


Correct.

there was a team of guys who were planning on building a combination gas gun/ rocketry system which had ablative plating. It was supposed to be able to ship 100lbs payloads of fuel, cargo, or small satellites to space for just $300 per pound. I haven't heard much about htis lately.

However, this guy actually worked with some pretty big names in the government including working with scramjets and things, so it wasn't just some crackpot scheme. They seemed to believe it really would be economically feasible.

Anyway, he has said in a presentation that a rail gun would never work for this, and that only a hydrogen gas gun would work.

And yes, the rockets would need several inches worth of ablative plating on the nose cone.
PinkElephant
4.6 / 5 (9) Dec 10, 2010
Another perspective on the energy-cost: one US gallon of gasoline is equivalent to ~120 MJ.

@QC,
it doesn't have any chance of a catastrophic explosion or failure like other big guns.
Incorrect. For instance, if the projectile "catches" on the rails mid-firing, the kinetic energy would go directly into the gun and its surroundings in the form of heat: i.e. an explosion.

Last time I checked, the biggest problem with rail guns is that the rail surfaces require very high tolerances for high-efficiency, precision firing. But the enormous EM fields developed during firing, produce huge forces on the rails (Newton's first law, really), and tend to cause them to warp. The high transient heat doesn't help, either. Thus, railguns have very short duty cycles before they need to be seriously overhauled or even replaced. That... would tend to add to the cost per shot, just a tad.
Quantum_Conundrum
3.1 / 5 (10) Dec 10, 2010
Incorrect. For instance, if the projectile "catches" on the rails mid-firing, the kinetic energy would go directly into the gun and its surroundings in the form of heat: i.e. an explosion.


That's nowhere near as bad as the ammo magazine on a conventional gun exploding after a mis-fire or being hit by an enemy weapon.
PinkElephant
4.1 / 5 (11) Dec 10, 2010
Oh but wait for it... The energy banks necessary to fire railguns must dump into the gun a lot of electricity very quickly. As a result, they must effectively take the form of large capacitor banks.

If the energy banks get hit by enemy fire, the fun effects could range from mass electrocution to frying the ship's various electrical systems (potentially including engine, as well as command and control), ignition of the ship's fuel, or just plain chemical or mechanical secondary explosions (including the capacitors themselves turning into balls of plasma due to massive internal electrical breakdown) and attendant fires and hull breaches (depending on the nature of the capacitor banks.)

Energy storage is never accident-proof, regardless of whether it's chemical or electrical. And there's no such thing as a safe weapon, or a safe weapons platform in a war zone...
zslewis91
1.5 / 5 (16) Dec 10, 2010
waste of money. Nuff said
Quantum_Conundrum
3.8 / 5 (10) Dec 10, 2010
waste of money. Nuff said


Why?

Range and mobility are two of the most important advantages anyone can have in military conflict.

This weapon literally gives a destroyer hours of being able to shoot at an enemy vessel before the enemy even gets in range to shoot back, and that's not even counting that the destroyer could just maneuver to always stay out of the enemy range anyway, since they are faster than the majority of potential enemy vessels anyway.

If you don't understand how huge range advantage is you've probably never studied military history, and certainly haven't played war games or strategy games.

This thing has a muzzle velocity of one mile per second. 110 nautical miles =~ 127 statute miles.

Fire rate 10 rounds per minute means by the time the first round reaches the target there can be as many as 21 more rounds in the air.
Quantum_Conundrum
2 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
Say you have a 100 meter vessel for a target, aim where they are projected to be in a grid offset 50 meters in every direction...

Even if they take evasive action such as zig zagging, etc, you will still hit with at least one or two rounds.

Range advantage makes it completely impossible for them to counter attack, since the destroyer is probably just as fast or faster than the enemy vessel anyway.
Eikka
not rated yet Dec 10, 2010
I'd actually be interested in the efficiency of this thing.

Because traditionally, electromagnetic guns get exponentially worse as you try to increase the force and speed they put to the projectile. The amateur built guns operate at around .1% efficiency just to break the sound barrier, but if you'll settle for less speed they can go up to 12% efficient.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 10, 2010
@lariann
Here is something NASA is considering:
http://www.univer...e-stars/

-I've seen others-
PinkElephant
2.3 / 5 (8) Dec 10, 2010
But railgun ammo isn't (for obvious reasons) explosive. So to do any damage, the projectile would have to score a direct hit. By contrast, regular artillery ammo can do wide-area explosive or fragmentation damage.

Furthermore, by the end of a 110 NM trajectory, I bet the projectile is no longer moving at anywhere close to 1 mile per second. Additionally, to fire successfully out of such a narrow aperture, and to travel at such velocities through the lower atmosphere, the projectile takes the shape of essentially a metallic needle. Hitting a ship, all it will do is punch a very narrow needle-like hole. It's unlikely to do much serious damage.

Also, this would be quite ineffective against subs, or stealthy ships whose location you can't pinpoint from beyond the horizon anyway.

The only real effective applications, as I see it, would be against ballistic missiles in boost phase (but this would require insanely high accuracy), or close-quarters anti-missile/anti-aircraft defense.
plasticpower
3 / 5 (1) Dec 10, 2010
If a nuclear-powered vessel is equipped with this I don't see an issue with energy. Sure it will have capacitors, but I bet you they're not the giant explosive kind mentioned in the comments here.

This is quite an achievement actually. At that speed the projectile can go straight through the enemy vessel, it would also be fairly effective against aircraft and possibly ballistic projectiles which tend to fly slow and with a predictable trajectory. If this thing can be aimed dead on (and I'm sure it can with modern computing muscle) I can see this being a huge hit on the battlefield. Not to mention it will cut a lot of cost. Metal slug price < missile price
plasticpower
5 / 5 (5) Dec 10, 2010

Furthermore, by the end of a 110 NM trajectory, I bet the projectile is no longer moving at anywhere close to 1 mile per second.


Not necessarily. An aerodynamic enough projectile (like a needle shaped one with small stabilizers) will not lose much of its velocity over such a distance due to air resistance. Gravity is what ultimately puts an end to its trajectory, and when it hits the ground/water/enemy it still has plenty of energy to share with whatever it hits.

For instance, if you fire a 45 caliber pistol parallel to the ground, the bullet will hit the ground around 400 ft away, almost like a paintball gun. Gravity makes it fall as it's flying. But because of the weight of the bullet, and its forward velocity it will still be lethal if you were laying on the ground when it "fell" on you.
Quantum_Conundrum
3.9 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
Pink Elephant:

Look at a crash dummy video.

That's the energy of a 1 tonne car hitting a wall at just 30 mph.

This weapon hits equal to 33 tonnes at 100mph, or 110 times the kinetic energy of the 1 tonne car at 30mph.

When it hits something it's going to be just like a rifle bullet hitting a glass bottle. It will completely explode, not due to chemistry, but due to kinetic energy. We're talking conflagration similar to a meteor strike for several meters around the target.

Here we also see a "shotgun" variant of a rail gun round for destroying infantry and aircraft stationed on the ground.

http://www.youtub...amp;NR=1
PinkElephant
1 / 5 (3) Dec 10, 2010
I only see short-distance/line of sight operation of such a weapon. Maybe not anti-ship: not being heavily armored, to such rounds these targets will be like paper to a bullet: in through one side, and out the other, with not much kaboom in between.

The beyond-horizon, long-distance artillery use seems unlikely: for this weapon you'd need very high accuracy over very long distances without any in-flight trajectory compensation. Additionally, incoming rounds will paint an IR trail in the atmosphere so bright, the enemy could easily triangulate the source and counterattack with its own long-range weapons...

The shotgun concept is interesting, but anti-infantry you can use regular artillery and air-to-ground munitions (infantry can't fight back against ordinary mortar fire, never mind long-range guns or bombers.) Plus, making it so the shotgun mechanism isn't triggered or destroyed by the stresses/temperatures of launch and flight, would be quite a technological triumph in itself.
Mercury_01
5 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
Sure it will have capacitors, but I bet you they're not the giant explosive kind mentioned in the comments here.


I bet theyre pretty impressive at least. Any kind of cap that can discharge that kind of juice rapidly would be capable of some pretty horrific EMP-producing, steel-melting arcs if damaged. Have you ever put a small capacitor in a power outlet? make sure its off first.

I wonder about the rate of fire.
Raveon
3.7 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
waste of money. Nuff said


Waste of money? This is why ignorant people shouldn't be allowed to vote, they usually have no idea what they are talking about.

While it isn't completely safe, as another poster said storing the kind of energy required for this weapon creates its own dangers if it is released other than as intended, it isn't as bad as explosives because the energy is only stored before firing. So it is much safer relative to conventional explosive weapons as well as the fact that if it is kinetic there are no explosive warheads to store either. The effects of this weapon in close range ship to ship battle would be devastating as well. Between the safety and the order of magnitude performance gain it isn't even close to a waste of money.

There is also the added benefit of the electrical system for this weapon used to catapault planes electromagnetically on carriers instead of steam catapaults and smaller versions of the weapon on board as well.

Raveon
5 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
To pinkelephant, I think there is no reason that projectiles can't be controlled in-flight if necessary. If I recall correctly they have already created electronics that can withstand the G forces created by this weapon and mechanical systems should be easily possible as well. I think smart projectiles are possible.
Husky
not rated yet Dec 11, 2010
at least you could have the generator providing the juice, seperated more remotely in the heavily shielded interior of the ship, opposed to conventional deck cannon wich is more or less surrounded by volatile ammo, even better would be to have not 1 but at least three power reroutable generators (rear, midship, front) so that there is not a single point of failure to cripple the whole ship by a lucky hit of the opponent or technical failure
Husky
4 / 5 (1) Dec 11, 2010
Perhaps it would be interesting to mount a railgun on top of silent hybrid diesel/electric powered subs, wich could sneek up to coastlines unnoticed and launch a surprise attack on inland high value targets, especially on submarines reducing the amount of explosives inboard is absolutely critical, unlike ships, you just can't afford much hull breach from a malfunction torpedo inside, so have numerous accidents shown
Foundation
not rated yet Dec 11, 2010
About reaching orbit with cannons, like QQ said these guys are working on a hydrogen powered system:
http://quicklaunchinc.com (with the presentation in question under videos)
Sadly I haven't seen any change on that site since last year, so I'm not sure if there has been any progress.
Raveon
not rated yet Dec 11, 2010
The power system for this stuff is going to be massive, especially if it needs to achieve a high rate of fire. A sub would have to be specially built to house and power this weapon. That seems unlikely.

When carriers are built or refitted for electromagnetic catapults they will have the power and systems for this weapon mostly in place so it's a natural fit for them. Cruiser classes may have to be built almost from scratch. I think they would have to be nuclear powered to have that kind of juice available.
Raveon
not rated yet Dec 11, 2010
As far as explosive capacitors are concerned, you can bet that with the energy this weapon needs to store before firing they ARE potentially explosive.

joefarah
1.8 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
The problem with an orbital capability is that you have to commit to launch before the engines are ready (i.e. running), and you don't light the engines until you're at mach 5. So it would be quite a feat to mix and match this tech with a rocket booster. And a fair bit of risk.
ThanderMAX
5 / 5 (1) Dec 11, 2010
Reminds me of the cannon used in Transformer 2 movie to knock "The Fallen" from pyramid
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Dec 11, 2010
Reminds me of the cannon used in Transformer 2 movie to knock "The Fallen" from pyramid

That'd be exactly the weapon they're talking about above.
otto1932
1.6 / 5 (26) Dec 11, 2010
But railgun ammo isn't (for obvious reasons) explosive. So to do any damage, the projectile would have to score a direct hit.
The M1 tank cannon has similar velocity, and can fire HEAT ammo.

"The 120mm M256 gun of the M1A1 tank fires various types of ammunition, the most known being the M829A1 APFSDS-T ammunition (kinetic energy round with long rod penetrator, made of depleted uranium, with a muzzle velocity of 1,575 m/sec"

-The penetrator does more than just punch a hole:

"Depleted uranium ... penetrator and armor partially liquefy under the tremendous pressure. Once the armour has been perforated, that part of the penetrator which has not melted, together with the molten armour and fragments that break away from the interior, ricochet inside the vehicle. This usually causes a fire, and if it reaches stored ammunition inside the tank, leads to catastrophic explosions."
dinnty
not rated yet Dec 11, 2010
Speaking of Railgun-Aided launch to orbit:

I wonder how much do these weigh and is launch from a large balloon or aircraft feasible?

The conventional SF scenario is a system accelerating up a mountain, but I don't think you could get above enough of the atmosphere to help since even at 18,000 feet you still have half of the atmospheric pressure at sea level. Of course, you would have more room to give gentler acceleration or build up greater velocity. Would work great for launching from the moon's surface a la Heinlein in "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress".
sstritt
2 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
Yes- perfect for lunar launches. Great way to send the Helium 3 shipments back to earth.
Quantum_Conundrum
3 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
Yes- perfect for lunar launches. Great way to send the Helium 3 shipments back to earth.


Not so fast. First we need to build Helium 3 reactors...
Quantum_Conundrum
3 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
I found this video online rather quickly.

This is from a prototype test several years ago and was posted in 2007.

http://www.youtub...aLcC3G74

Most of the people commenting on the video are pretty ignorant...

Observe the fireball produced even by an inert, purely kinetic projectile.

Also note the penetration through several metal-encased blocks of soil.

I'm not sure how big this prototype was, but probably 8 megajoules or less.
Simonsez
5 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
@ QC

You beat me to it - I remembered well the video and accompanying articles from when info about this tech had first reached the public. I am glad to see it is in full working order now.

@ PinkElephant

The original information given in 2007 suggested they would be able to arc the rounds over mountains without being able to physically "see" a target, and hit with near 100% accuracy. I suppose they were suggesting using satellites and lasers to mark targets; I also suppose they mean to hit slow-moving or stationary targets such as tanks, parked aircraft and bunkers or other strategic installations. The article also suggested, as others above, that the projectile will contain enough kinetic energy upon impact (even after arcing through the sky over a mountain, say) that it would literally cause an explosion as with any conventional ordnance.
SteveL
3.8 / 5 (10) Dec 11, 2010
just what we need, more guns


You may not realize it, but there are people out there that don't think you should be alive. They really don't care that you're a good person, they just want you to stop breathing.

I'm comforted in knowing that the good folks on our side are staying a few steps ahead of those other people.
Briantllb
2 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
just what we need, more guns


I wonder what the result of spending the money this weapons research has cost on, lets say Cancer research, or famine reduction, land degradation etc. would have been.
Briantllb
2.7 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
just what we need, more guns


You may not realize it, but there are people out there that don't think you should be alive. They really don't care that you're a good person, they just want you to stop breathing.

I'm comforted in knowing that the good folks on our side are staying a few steps ahead of those other people.


lets give those 'other people' a name they are MOSLEMS
Quantum_Conundrum
1 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
Shotgun variant:

Imagine the pellets are of the same caliber as a 30-06, whch is rought equivalent to an M-14 rifle.

Now to put in perspective, I have relative's who've killed two deer with one shot, at 100 yards using a 30-06.

The dispersed pellets in the rail gun would still have velocity 5 to 7 times the muzzle velocity of a 30-06 at the time they hit target.

Dispersal pattern to hit every 1 to 1.5 feet in every direction guarantees all humans in the target area are hit at least one time, regardless of position. Standing or prone "square on" targets could be hit 2 to 4 times in the head and torso, 4 to 10 times total, depending on limb orientation.

Additionally, each pellet would easily pass clean through the first person it hits, killing or maiming any second or third target behind them in the case of a 30 degree to 45 degree angle shot.

for vehicles and supplies: Every fuel tank, radiator, ammo box, oil pan, and window in the area is guaranteed to be destroyed.
Raveon
4.5 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
just what we need, more guns


You may not realize it, but there are people out there that don't think you should be alive. They really don't care that you're a good person, they just want you to stop breathing.

I'm comforted in knowing that the good folks on our side are staying a few steps ahead of those other people.


lets give those 'other people' a name they are MOSLEMS


Yeah, and Timothy McVeigh was a christian. You have a good point, but if you grow your hair longer and wear a hat you can hide it.
Raveon
5 / 5 (1) Dec 11, 2010
For launching rockets you don't need nearly the velocity or acceleration and any initial velocity imparted will give it huge fuel/weight savings. They are doing it with the Superman ride aren't they? It will be tricky but solid fuel boosters are pretty reliable, it's liquid fuel engines that are extremely antsy.
Quantum_Conundrum
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
I know I'm posting away on this, but based on this link posted on the other thread, it appears this article isn't very clear about the actual velocity of this weapon.

The muzzle velocity is actually 7.5 mach, which is higher than I first thought. The impact velocity for indirect, ballistic trajectory at maximum range is at 5 mach, which is still roughly 1 mile per second.

http://atg.ga.com...ndex.php
lexington
5 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
Excellent now I just need one for myself. It's all about self defense, you see.
Mesafina
3 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
I love the technology... too bad it has to be used to murder people.
ryggesogn2
1.5 / 5 (8) Dec 11, 2010
I love the technology... too bad it has to be used to murder people.

It's too bad you don't understand the definition of murder.
finitesolutions
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
"It's too bad you don't understand the definition of murder."

If you kill me is not murder but if I kill you it is?
Or if we die together (sometimes it happens) it is?
ryggesogn2
1.9 / 5 (11) Dec 11, 2010
"It's too bad you don't understand the definition of murder."

If you kill me is not murder but if I kill you it is?
Or if we die together (sometimes it happens) it is?

Killing to stop a murder is not murder.
Ratfish
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
A futuristic weapon with an anachronistic purpose. Perhaps they can invent an ancillary time travel system that attaches to it so we can send it back to WWII.
Glyndwr
4.2 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
To be fair, telling people that they are ignorant for not being keen on yet more killing power to fight yet more irrational wars is ignorant themselves....humans should be uniting to go into space where we may find other species that do need to be defended agaisnt due to there aggressive mentality....not killing our own bloody species
Glyndwr
4 / 5 (7) Dec 11, 2010
"It's too bad you don't understand the definition of murder."

If you kill me is not murder but if I kill you it is?
Or if we die together (sometimes it happens) it is?


Killing to stop a murder is not murder.


There are ways to stop a murder without killing. ;)
Mesafina
4 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
ryggesogn2, are you saying you know for sure that this weapon will only ever be used to stop murder? What is your definition of murder? How do you know the future? Are you some kind of psychic?

I love any and all technological developments, and feel/hope we will probably overcome the dangers of them all. However, recognizing those dangers is paramount to overcoming them. If you believe that killing a person is not 'murder' because it suits your cause, then you are a dangerous idealogue who would use technology to harm others who don't agree with you.

Is that what you are?
Quantum_Conundrum
1.5 / 5 (8) Dec 11, 2010
To be fair, telling people that they are ignorant for not being keen on yet more killing power to fight yet more irrational wars is ignorant themselves....humans should be uniting to go into space where we may find other species that do need to be defended agaisnt due to there aggressive mentality....not killing our own bloody species


Actually, it's completely rational.

Here's how it works.

Evil/irrational person (Usually a Muslim, Nazi, or Atheistic Communist) wants to kill everyone else.

Rational person must defend themself and therefore works diligently to make a better weapon than the irrational person who can't be negotiated with anyway.

Why is it that you think aggressive, irrational space aliens must be defended against, but aggressive, irrational humans must not be harmed, even if they murder everyone else?
Quantum_Conundrum
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
Mesafina:

"killing" and "Murder" are not necessarily the same thing, and never have been.

The dictionary defines murder as, "...the unlawful killing of one person by another..."

However, t hat isn't specific enough terminology for my part.

But for example, administering the death penalty for a crime has never been considered murder, not in Biblical times, and not now.

The commandment in the Bible is even incorrectly translated, and is supposed to say, "Thou shalt not murder." Which is obvious because elsewhere in the Bible the commandments administer the death penalty in some cases, which was first commanded by God to Noah that whoever sheds man's blood should be put to death. There are something like 9 different words in the Bible that are translated "kill," but that have slightly different contextual meanings.

If a person is guilty of "Murder" then the penalty is death. "Killing" the murderer is not murder. It is to protect everyone else from the evil person.
Raveon
2.8 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
Self defense isn't murder. Offense is. There is one way to stop this violence but you won't like it. The root cause of all wars are governments. Eliminate all governments except local ones like states, disarm them all and war goes away forever. Simplistic? Optimistic? Feasible? Maybe, maybe not, I think all governments are the root of evil. Maybe it isn't the greatest idea but our species has been in a constant state of war, all started by governments, since history began. Is that a better idea? I don't think so, in fact I know it isn't.
Quantum_Conundrum
2.3 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
Raveon:

Please tell me you're joking.

War existed long before anything remotely resembling a modern government or even city-states existed.

Governments are not the cause of war. The evil hearts of individuals is the cause of war.

In the ancient world, "war" was simply what happened when one tribe tried to murder another, and the second managed to fight back.

The purpose of governments is actually an attempt to maintain some manner of order and decency among individual humans, families, and tribes.

The "government" does not cause domestic violence, murder, or rape,for example. It tries to prevent them,a nd punish the perpetrators.

A "defensive war" or even the "war on terror" is not really any different than the government policing any other crime. The only key thing that is a bit different is that now nation-states are united into millions, ten millions, hundred millions, even billions, instead of small families and tribes.
otto1932
1.6 / 5 (26) Dec 11, 2010
ryggesogn2, are you saying you know for sure that this weapon will only ever be used to stop murder? What is your definition of murder? How do you know the future? Are you some kind of psychic?

I love any and all technological developments, and feel/hope we will probably overcome the dangers of them all. However, recognizing those dangers is paramount to overcoming them. If you believe that killing a person is not 'murder' because it suits your cause, then you are a dangerous idealogue who would use technology to harm others who don't agree with you.

Is that what you are?
The perception of the need to defend oneself is innate in all living things, pretty much, except in individuals with significant cognitive defects. It is safe to assume by your lyricism that you are defective in some fashion. Luckily there are not enough of you to appreciably affect the ability of the rest of us to defend ourselves, either individually or as a group.
SteveL
3 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
"humans should be uniting to go into space"

Some powers don't want humanity to go into space. They fear, and rightly so, that they will lose power and influence over those who leave this cradle of ours. Humanity left to its own devices may never be free of strife. Every generation humanity produces religous, political or economic tyrants for whom local domination is never enough.

Peace on earth is a nice dream and a worthy goal, but I'm afraid that the entirety of our recorded past, the present that we exist in now and the forseeable future all weigh heavily against that dream becoming a reality.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
are you saying you know for sure that this weapon will only ever be used to stop murder

Yes.
It will be used to defend people from attack.
I_Dont_Have_A_Name
1 / 5 (1) Dec 12, 2010
Okay...So it's a 1980's rail gun? Who cares? We use these to launch tons of stuff...one being the LPDAT jet system. (laser pulse detonation engine scram jet...mach 18+ *skips in and out of orbit*) That was 2001...look up Aurea (its early conspiracy name) and DARPA's Falcon / Vulcan program that was "canceled" in 2008. They aren't canceled and these rail guns can go much much much faster then mach 5. Try mach 9 off the launch with the new ones. So now try this.
Combine the old school plane release with a rail gun accelerator and you've got one damn fast moving weapon.
15 minutes. Anywhere in the world. Welcome to the 2002.
mrlewish
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
Waste of money.. We already have weapons systems that can reach out hundreds of miles... and if you aren't willing to risk your soldiers lives (ie put your money where you mouth is and get the job done) then maybe you shouldn't be having this possible war.
sender
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
Utilizing this to launch disks with both explosive and laser guidance properties would yield a great deal of control especially when utilized as part of a space fountain array system.


Yes initially purely beam powered systems would have to be utilized to pierce through the atmosphere and provide an ideal gas substrate for said disks to flow through as well as supporting balloon platforms for magnetic repeater accelerators along the path.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Dec 12, 2010
Okay...So it's a 1980's rail gun? Who cares? We use these to launch tons of stuff...one being the LPDAT jet system. (laser pulse detonation engine scram jet...mach 18+ *skips in and out of orbit*) That was 2001...look up Aurea (its early conspiracy name) and DARPA's Falcon / Vulcan program that was "canceled" in 2008. They aren't canceled and these rail guns can go much much much faster then mach 5. Try mach 9 off the launch with the new ones. So now try this.
15 minutes. Anywhere in the world. Welcome to the 2002.
So you're a conspiracy theorist and don't actually know what you're talking about.

The jet in question is the Aurora.
The gun in testing is the smallest railgun we've built for military use, mountable on standard artilery platforms as opposed to consuming an entire battleship.
Combine the old school plane release with a rail gun accelerator and you've got one damn fast moving weapon.
Or a dead pilot and a billion dollar waste.
SkillyJr
5 / 5 (6) Dec 12, 2010
I find it interesting how ignorant so many people are about the "terrorists" we are currently fighting against. Many people think that all Islam is to blame, and should be hated, but that's simply not true. Islam itself is a very peaceful belief that respects all life, and encourages free thinking and intellectual advancement. Who we are actually fighting against are Islamic extremists, who use a twisted and corrupt interpretation of the Qur'an (their bible) to justify the killing of innocents. These extremists believe that the westernization of their countries is an invasion on Islam, and therefore took it upon themselves to start a Jihad, or Holy War, against the western countries. So no, Muslims are not at fault for anything, nor are they like Nazis. The Islamic extremists, however, are the same as any other "terrorist" group, in that they are misguided people who use a corrupt form of reason or religion and are directed and/or funded by people in power that want to stay in power.
SkillyJr
1 / 5 (1) Dec 12, 2010
Combine the old school plane release with a rail gun accelerator and you've got one damn fast moving weapon.
15 minutes. Anywhere in the world. Welcome to the 2002.

OR you could just use the Ram-Jets that we currently have and are testing that can reach Mach 14 (faster on a good day). That's in Popular Science/Mechanics too, and not a conspiracy theory. Also, Ram-Jets would be much more suitable for the "15-minute death missile" that you're talking about, as they can carry payloads, as opposed to railguns which currently just use big metal slugs.
Uncle_Bex
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
Somehow I don't see this new technology replacing the older, more traditional methods of launching cows over the castle walls in order to repel invaders/curious travelers. This is purely for practical reasons of course. The arc would be killer to get it over the castle walls and then actually be able to hit anything. And, then again, after a trip at mach 5, there might not be much cow left.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
Somehow I don't see this new technology replacing the older, more traditional methods of launching cows over the castle walls in order to repel invaders/curious travelers. This is purely for practical reasons of course. The arc would be killer to get it over the castle walls and then actually be able to hit anything. And, then again, after a trip at mach 5, there might not be much cow left.

The problem with these weapons is that we're getting to a point where range isn't an issue, it's the curvature of the Earth.
barakn
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
Pink Elephant -
Furthermore, by the end of a 110 NM trajectory, I bet the projectile is no longer moving at anywhere close to 1 mile per second. Additionally, to fire successfully out of such a narrow aperture, and to travel at such velocities through the lower atmosphere, the projectile takes the shape of essentially a metallic needle.

200 km at 5x the speed of sound is a 120 second journey. This would be a ballistic trajectory which would reach an altitude of 18 km. It would spend half its time above 14 km. Not much air up there.
hourifromparadise
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
A product of testosteron monkeys . The most useless product of the year .
Quantum_Conundrum
1.3 / 5 (15) Dec 12, 2010
Islam itself is a very peaceful belief that respects all life, and encourages free thinking and intellectual advancement.


You're not very familliar with the Quran/Koran, are you?

In reality, the "extremists" actually are the ones following both the "spirit" and the "letter" of the Koran.

The Koran has blanket commandments to Muslims to murder all Christians, Jews, and other "infidels". To lie about their intentions, to secretly lay in wait for them, to strike off their heads and hands where ever they can be found, and etc.

When Mr. Bush several years back called Islam a "religion of peace and love" it was a complete betrayal of the public trust, and a violation of his oath of office.

Now we have an even worse, New Age, entirely pro-Islam president in the white house who even has the audacity to go bow down to "Allah" in a muslim mosque, which somehow manages to not offend the liberal left.
Foundation
5 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
That sounds remarkably like the bible QC.
None of the religions of the book are intrinsically peaceful. The real matter is what people do with their religion.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.2 / 5 (34) Dec 12, 2010
Waste of money.. We already have weapons systems that can reach out hundreds of miles... and if you aren't willing to risk your soldiers lives (ie put your money where you mouth is and get the job done) then maybe you shouldn't be having this possible war.
Like Patton said, it's not our job to die for our country, it's to make the enemy die for his. This weapon will save lives of the people who would not be at risk if the enemy didn't exist.
finitesolutions
3.7 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
And when all settles we will all be part of the USA empire and need to pay them taxes. Please look for a better model. USA will always betray its allies. USA has a very short memory. Lots of people that worked with Americans ended dead. Beware of USA!
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.2 / 5 (35) Dec 12, 2010
Islam itself is a very peaceful belief that respects all life, and encourages free thinking and intellectual advancement.
All religions claim that, while at the same time encouraging adherents to out-reproduce the next religion, and to vigorously defend themselves once the inevitable conflict ensues. The argument can be made that the Quran contains more direct incitement to violence per page than any other holy book.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.2 / 5 (35) Dec 12, 2010
And when all settles we will all be part of the USA empire and need to pay them taxes. Please look for a better model. USA will always betray its allies. USA has a very short memory. Lots of people that worked with Americans ended dead. Beware of USA!
World Leaders have bigger Things in mind. The US has always been a smaller part of a bigger Whole. Step back and gain a better perspective.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
"The attack "is unacceptable because Sweden is an open society and an open society which has stated a wish that people should be able to have different backgrounds, believe in different gods or not believe in any at all, and live side by side in our open society," Reinfeldt said at a news conference."
http://news.yahoo...YWxzY29u
What are they going to DO to stop future attacks?
yyz
5 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
Don't know if anyone has mentioned this, but a couple of impressive YouTube videos of the gun in action are available:

http://www.youtub...=related
http://www.youtub...embedded

There are interior shots of the gun itself along with capacitor banks and associated equipment. The longer video shows some of the test projectiles used as well as a test earlier this year using a very slender projectile.

The shorter clip shows the record-breaking shot mentioned above (with a different projectile). Pretty awesome to see this railgun in action.

I notice the Navy's Latin motto for the project is "velocitas eradico" (speed destroys). Indeed.
SkillyJr
3.7 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
@QC:
hating islam as you are so blatantly doing is making you no better than the extremists are.

in the end, it pretty much boils down to this: all religion is bad because it causes ridiculous, backward thinking, blatant racism against anyone not in their religion, and conflict caused thereof.
KingDWS
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
So many things to comment on...

Gerald Bull in the 60's Harp or Harpe project in Canada. Used two 16 or 17 inch surplus battleship barrels to research shooting stuff into orbit. Huge gun and fireball if you can find picture of it.

A kinetic kill is every bit effective as an explosive kill. And there is no residue or timing issues. This is a larger round than a tank round and punching through thinner stuff comparatively and with higher velocity. I haven't seen any speculation on how hard it would hit but I would imagine it would really ruin someones day.

PinkElephant
not rated yet Dec 12, 2010
@otto1932,

The difference between firing a penetrating round at a tank vs a ship, is that the tank is heavily armored. Imagine firing that same M1 round at a regular bus. It will punch a very neat hole, but it won't do much melting or fire-starting, because there wouldn't be enough material in its way to interact with it.

The same thing is true of ships: they aren't heavily armored like tanks are. Against ships, you want high-explosive rather than kinetic rounds. Or if you're going to use kinetic rounds, you'd better have a pretty high rate of fire (approaching that of a semi-automatic rifle.) That's not very likely to be accomplished with this type of railgun any time soon (though I can see it 20+ years from now...)
Justsayin
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
Think how a smaller version shooting a wall of lead at incoming missiles would perform protecting the aircraft carrier. Sometimes the best defense is the best offense. JMHO
TMW
5 / 5 (1) Dec 12, 2010
A fairly good sci-fi book on this rail gun technology is called "Weapons of Choice by John Birmingham for those who may like.
Mesafina
5 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
QC, since you yourself have claimed to see a divine miracle, and to believe in god therefor, how can YOU hold it against muslims who feel the same way? If they say god told them to kill you, how do you know they are lying or delusional? In the same light, how do I know you are lying or delusional.

Your hatred of islam should be replaced by a general disdain for all religious insititions, including but not limited to islamic institutions. Atm you just sound like a hypocrite.

And as far as the difference between murder and killing, I don't happen to believe that 'law' is any definitive red line, seeing as how law can be and has been perverted to commit murder many times in the past. Guess the nazi's were not murderers since they were also the state?
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
The use of a weapon like this would mainly be in support of an assault. An incoming fleet could use remote sensing or intelligence collected in advance to pinpoint tactical targets on shore. Land based radar can't see over the horizon, so the fleet can stay hidden behind the curve of the earth and hurl slugs over the horizon with little or no warning. They can knock out things like radar stations, communications towers, shore defenses, bridges, observation posts, fuel depot's, anti-aircraft and anti-ship missile sites, etc. That clears the way for carrier based aircraft to go inland and open a safe bubble to bring troop carrier ships close to the shore and land troops on the beach. It essentially does the same job as a million dollar per shot tomohawk missile or a JSOW bomb. It also frees up ground attack bombers to hit other, more mobile targets in stead of dinky little radio towers.

It doesn't take much to knock a radio tower or radar dish out of order for long enough to matter.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
You can essentially turn a tiny little ROV aircraft into a deadly hunter/killer by using it (of a fleet of dozens of ROV's), as spotters to guide fire to targets of opportunity. Over a few days time, with just a couple of ships armed with this kind of gun, you could send a huge strip of coastline back to the stoneage in preperation for an assault. For example, if such a ship was located off shore near NYC, you could hit every stationary target in the state of New Jersey practically. Depending on rate of fire, you could destroy every highway bridge in a very short time. Every runway could be cratered. Every radar shut down, every power plant crippled. A missile cruiser can do the same, but there's only so many Tomohawk's you can fit on an Aegis Cruiser at one time. Smaller, simpler ammo is a big deal on a ship, where space is a premium. The system to store, load and launch missiles on a missile cruiser is very large and complex. This could be much simpler and smaller.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
As to Pink's comment about the recoil of a rail gun, that's just an engineering problem. It's no different than solving the problems associated with the chemical propellant used in a 20 inch conventional battleship gun. In this case you wouldn't have the exhaust gasses, hot ashes, and huge back-pressure of the chemical propellants though. Standard battleship guns recoil so hard that they actually move the whole ship sideways several feet when they fire a volley.

One thing I'm curious about is whether it's possible to put any electronic guidance on a rail gun round, or if the EM effects of the gun would fry them? Another engineering problem I guess. I'm sure it could be overcome.
Geneii
5 / 5 (1) Dec 13, 2010
Consistantly hitting the bull on a station paper target in a good breeze with the most accurate of modern rifles, the best downrange information and the latest and greatest computer programs is a real stretch at several hundred meters. A moving and evasive target at those greater ranges?? This gun might work best on stationary land based targets.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
Yes, like a bridge, a port facility, or a runway, as I stated immediately above your comment.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (6) Dec 13, 2010
You're not very familliar with the Quran/Koran, are you?

In reality, the "extremists" actually are the ones following both the "spirit" and the "letter" of the Koran.
If you followed the "spirit" or letter of the Bible you'd be just as wacky as the Islamic extremists are.
MikeMike
3.7 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
zslewis91, you should have said "criminal waste of money". The USA spends 10 times the amount as #2 (UK).
The $$ could be put to much better use.
Otto_the_Magnificent
1.5 / 5 (24) Dec 14, 2010
The difference between firing a penetrating round at a tank vs a ship, is that the tank is heavily armored. Imagine firing that same M1 round at a regular bus. It will punch a very neat hole, but it won't do much melting or fire-starting, because there wouldn't be enough material in its way to interact with it.
Depends on where it is hit. Fuel tanks, reactors, magazines, planes, pumps, engines, etc I imagine would light up pretty good. Fires would start in whichever rooms this molten DU dart would pass through.

Many ships are armored also such as battleships.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Dec 14, 2010
zslewis91, you should have said "criminal waste of money". The USA spends 10 times the amount as #2 (UK).
The $$ could be put to much better use.

The US could let the rest of the world deal with China, DPRK, Iran, Russia and each other, on their own just as they did in the 20s and 30s.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Dec 15, 2010
The US could let the rest of the world deal with China, DPRK, Iran, Russia and each other, on their own just as they did in the 20s and 30s.
There's a few world events that came to pass due to American isolationism. ie: Genocide in 3 nations, the abolition of multiple democracies, the beginning of Islamic terrorism, etc.

Probably not a good idea to take your ball and go home post globalization, Mr. Swenson.
A missile cruiser can do the same, but there's only so many Tomohawk's you can fit on an Aegis Cruiser at one time. Smaller, simpler ammo is a big deal on a ship, where space is a premium. The system to store, load and launch missiles on a missile cruiser is very large and complex. This could be much simpler and smaller.
Except, jsut like the Vulcan cannons on Humvee's, the majority of your weight for this weapon system is battery, not ammo. There's always a trade off.
ryggesogn2
1.1 / 5 (10) Dec 15, 2010
Probably not a good idea to take your ball and go home post globalization, Mr. Swenson.

That's what 'populists' and 'progressives' want the USA to do.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (4) Dec 15, 2010
That's what 'populists' and 'progressives' want the USA to do.
No, that's what you retarded TEA party morons want to do. "Progressives" as you call them, want more international trade, not less.

Again you show us how poisoned the 'contrarian conservative' mind is. Speaking as a self affirmed expert on economics, you suggest we stop trading. Laughable as always Mr. Political Hack Swenson. Laughable as always. You do actual conservatives a great disservice every time you speak.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
Except, jsut like the Vulcan cannons on Humvee's, the majority of your weight for this weapon system is battery, not ammo. There's always a trade off


An electrical gun should be much more rugged than the mechanical system under the deck of an Aegis that's used to load various missiles into the launcher. Moving parts and chemical propellants are a huge liability in terms of maintenance, and redundancy. An electric powered rail gun can have a lot more redundancy built into the system at very little cost in term of weight, space, and maintenance. Batteries and capacitors are the issue though, as you suggest. They probably are the limiting factor in terms of maximum sustained rate of fire and the length of time that rate can be sustained. Faster ROF would probably mean exponentially more weight. That's the same problem they have with aircraft born lasers. There's only so much juice you can pack into a square foot of space. I'm sure that's been analyzed though.
GSwift7
1.8 / 5 (5) Dec 15, 2010
No, that's what you retarded TEA party morons want to do


Just to be fair, the tea party is mainly about less taxes, less spending, government reform and constitutional governance. That all sounds pretty hard to argue with, which is why so many of us morons think it's a good idea. Our new governor here in SC is a tea party candidate, and as she said on a radio interview yesterday, she doesn't owe any political debt to either of the political parties because she won the election against their will. I kinda like the old gal. She's already talking about shaking a few snakes out of the money tree, and she hasn't even taken office yet. In an unprecidented move, she actually reduced the size of the governor's office by not hiring the usual number of cabinet members. That's a good start I think. Stupid tea party morons indeed.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (2) Dec 15, 2010
Stupid tea party morons indeed.
Ask her what she thinks of cutting the defense budget and see the idiot come to the forefront.

TEA party candidates look good in their rhetoric and fll apart under questioning. I haven't seen any of them come forward with a consistent stance on spending, earmarks, government waste, etc.

Most of them are more akin to the "freestaters" up here in NH. The people who stick nickles in parking meters to break them so the city can't collect parking fees. They're also the first to get in line to bitch about the conditions of the road when the city falls short due to meter replacement costs.
SteveL
not rated yet Dec 15, 2010
(off topic) I'm not a Tea Party advocate, but I do like the way they shook up the old guard, and hope they keep it up. I've been under the impression for many years that government has forgotten who is supposed to be working for whom. Are some of them idiots who shouldn't lead a cub scout den? Heck yes, but I also voted for Nikki Haley because I think she is able to step outside of the good-ole-boy politics. Our country can't afford and won't survive much more the same old way of doing business. Me, I'm still looking for change I can believe in and it'll require a group of people willing to commit political suicide by making unpopular and hard decisions for the needs of the society they swore under oath to defend. We simply have to abandon this entitlement mentality.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
Skeptic:

You need to check out Nikki Haley. I think you'd be impressed. So far she's more about action than talk. She actually held a meeting with all of our SC National representatives in one room the other day. Even Clyburn showed up. A meeting like that hasn't happened in any state in a very long time. Nobody ever does that. They've already started organizing to get meaningful stuff done. The list of things they started working on was a long one, including important work to support nuclear power here.

As for DOD budgets; I doubt any SC polititian will touch that button. This is a heavilly millitary state, and the new Boeing plant moving into Charleston won't be too happy if we start asking to cut defense programs either. You can't throw a rock here without hitting a soldier or a base of some kind. This is the most patriotic state I've ever lived in, and enough of us are tea party people to vote that way. Thats contrary to your beliefs I think.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Dec 15, 2010
You need to check out Nikki Haley. I think you'd be impressed.
Honestly I don't mind her fiscal policy too much, what I question is her politically expedient conversion from Sikhism to Christianity. It's a little too politically handy to suddenly become a Christian in adulthood just prior to running for political office. If she's willing to convert for political office (assumed, not proved) then what is she willing to do to in order to maintain that political office?
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
I lived in Orangeburg, where she was on the board of the Chamber of Commerce, for three years and I still work there. My father is currently on that board and owns a business there. I currently live in Lexington county, where she lives now and served on the Chamber Board after Orangeburg. I know one of the Luitenant Governor candidates, Bill Connor, very well, and the former Mayor of Orangeburg, from when she lived here, is a friend of the family. All the people I know of support her, and claim that she is the real deal and that she is sincere about the things she says. It scares the pants off of certain people too. That tells me it's probably true. They wouldn't be scared if she was a fraud.

In the end though, it's the next four years that will tell her tale. I think she's off to a good start. She's already been to Washington to argue with Obama about Obama-care. I hope I don't regret my vote in four years though.
alq131
5 / 5 (1) Dec 17, 2010
Mt. Kilamanjaro is at Lat -3deg. Altitude ~5800m. As in the book "Colonizing the Galaxy in 8 easy steps" by Marshall Savage, you put a rail launcher up the side for equatorial launches. With airlocks and evacuated launch tube, you eliminate a large portion of drag/heating. Then an ice slug on the back of the projectile is vaporized by lasers at the summit/launcher exit to provide ablative thrust. Voila...orbit with low energy use. (electric/gas for launch tube, electric for lasers...no hauling large heavy engines to orbit = greater payload capacity.

And now that the glaciers are virtually gone from Kilamanjaro, why not...
Uncle_Bex
5 / 5 (2) Dec 17, 2010
Somehow I don't see this new technology replacing the older, more traditional methods of launching cows over the castle walls in order to repel invaders/curious travelers. This is purely for practical reasons of course. The arc would be killer to get it over the castle walls and then actually be able to hit anything. And, then again, after a trip at mach 5, there might not be much cow left.

The problem with these weapons is that we're getting to a point where range isn't an issue, it's the curvature of the Earth.


I think my Monty Python reference might have been a bit too obscure. :~)
sstritt
1 / 5 (4) Dec 17, 2010


I think my Monty Python reference might have been a bit too obscure. :~)

No, it was verrrah nahzz. Fetchez la vache!
socean
5 / 5 (2) Dec 17, 2010
I want them to build a REALLY big rail gun so they can shoot me out of it.

As I fly over Tea Party members, I will fart in their general direction.
Shootist
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 18, 2010
just what we need, more guns


I wonder what the result of spending the money this weapons research has cost on, lets say Cancer research, or famine reduction, land degradation etc. would have been.


nothing.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Dec 18, 2010
I wonder what the result of spending the money this weapons research has cost on, lets say Cancer research, or famine reduction, land degradation etc. would have been.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute used to own Hughes Aircraft Company who designed and manufactured missiles, radar and satellites.
They were forced to sell their stake, but I think they still benefit from the shares of the eventual current owners, Raytheon.
Quantum_Conundrum
1 / 5 (2) Dec 18, 2010
nt
zevkirsh
not rated yet Dec 18, 2010
this weapon can be built in space one day for peaceful purposes. and used as a launching mechanism for interplanetary flight. it has all the benefits operating in the vacuums without any of the drawbacks. one can accelerate a giant mirror to ridiculous speeds and then as it approaches the moon, slow it down with a giant laser pointing at it- perhaps we could move freight to the moon at relatively low cost.
zevkirsh
not rated yet Dec 18, 2010
if 33 megajoules is enough to put a piece of lead ( wieghing how much ? ) 110 miles away. i'm left wondering how high an altitutde ceiling is there for the artillery to shoot planes out of the sky-if that's even possible.... not all that much flies above 10 miles high. i'm sure that information is classified. but i imagine that gravity and multiple layers of wind through the vertical air column combined with a moving small target, would make these shots harder.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Dec 18, 2010
In the end though, it's the next four years that will tell her tale. I think she's off to a good start. She's already been to Washington to argue with Obama about Obama-care. I hope I don't regret my vote in four years though.
Exactly right. In a way it is unfair to prejudge what all the newly elected personnels' careers will be based on the depth or lack of character beyond the campaign trail. We can only reap what we've sown. Let's hope we did well.
MorituriMax
1 / 5 (2) Dec 19, 2010
mrlewish opined,
and if you aren't willing to risk your soldiers lives (ie put your money where you mouth is and get the job done) then maybe you shouldn't be having this possible war.

When enemy soldiers start pillaging your town, remind me to not deploy with my unit to help you defend yourself.
Kedas
not rated yet Dec 19, 2010
v=5*340m/s
E=33MJ
E=m.v²
m=33e6/1700²= 11kg

So the 'bullet' weight is 11kg?
Kedas
not rated yet Dec 19, 2010
E=m.v²/2 so 22kg?
Skepticus_Rex
1 / 5 (2) Dec 20, 2010
Maybe I missed it but it would seem that no one is talking about the safety component to rail-gun technology. That is one of the appeals of this form of technology--safety to the crew because storage of explosive rounds potentially can be reduced or eliminated altogether.

Since the magnetizable metal rounds (they are not made of lead) used for this weapon are not explosive an enemy projectile would not set off the kind of explosive shells that we are using now and kill everyone on board. That is, of course, assuming that an enemy round even could reach the ships equipped with such weapons. The firing range makes this weapon appealing. And, it is extremely accurate.

The only real disadvantages to the technology at present are that after about ten shots or so the weapon literally shakes itself apart, as well as that they consume a great deal of power and probably should have their own power source. R&D are working on the firing limitation.
trekgeek1
not rated yet Jan 05, 2011
Islam itself is a very peaceful belief that respects all life, and encourages free thinking and intellectual advancement. Who we are actually fighting against are Islamic extremists, who use a twisted and corrupt interpretation of the Qur'an (their bible) to justify the killing of innocents. These extremists believe that the westernization of their countries is an invasion on Islam, and therefore took it upon themselves to start a Jihad, or Holy War, against the western countries. So no, Muslims are not at fault for anything, nor are they like Nazis. The Islamic extremists, however, are the same as any other "terrorist" group, in that they are misguided people who use a corrupt form of reason or religion and are directed and/or funded by people in power that want to stay in power.


Islam is inherently violent, just like the Bible. It's right there in plain text. Their not extremists, they're literalists.
SkillyJr
not rated yet Jan 07, 2011
Maybe I missed it but it would seem that no one is talking about the safety component to rail-gun technology. That is one of the appeals of this form of technology--safety to the crew because storage of explosive rounds potentially can be reduced or eliminated altogether.


yep, it was mentioned in the second comment.
Skepticus_Rex
1 / 5 (2) Jan 07, 2011
Looks like I missed that one... Thanks for pointing it out. Looks like I should avoid posting when tired. :)